Social network and health: A comparison of Chinese older adults in Shanghai and elderly immigrants in Boston


Journal Article

The association between social network and health in older Chinese immigrants in the USA and their counterparts in China was examined using data from 177 Chinese immigrants in Boston, USA and 428 respondents in Shanghai, China. The results showed that Chinese immigrants had a significantly better self-rated health status but also that they reported a greater number of functional limitations. Although the level of the social network differed among respondents in Shanghai and in Boston, the impact of the social network on health status was similar for the two samples. The impact of the social network diminished when covariates such as health behaviors and health problems were added to the models. The conclusion, therefore, is that much of the association between a strong social network and better self-reported health in later life may be explained by other factors such as socio-economic status, health behaviors, health status, and access to health care. © 2011 The Author(s). International Journal of Social Welfare © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd and the International Journal of Social Welfare.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Wu, B; Guo, M; Chi, I; Plassman, BL

Published Date

  • October 1, 2011

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 20 / SUPPL. 1

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1468-2397

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1369-6866

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1111/j.1468-2397.2011.00820.x

Citation Source

  • Scopus